Blog: 1,200 Area Jobs Announced Today — But Not In Escambia County

April 29, 2009

Another major economic development announcement took place this morning on the Gulf Coast, and, one again, the jobs were not in Escambia County.

A new call center in Mobile County near Saraland will employ about 1,200 people. Ryla Cooperation will begin hiring most of those people immediately and hopes to put them to work by June 1.

And the Mobile County Commission is not giving away the bank to lure the company. They are paying them just $87,500 a year for the next two years to locate in Mobile County.

Meanwhile in Escambia County, we continue to rely on the Pensacola Chamber of Commerce and grand dreams of a Maritime Park. The old build it (read: shell out millions) and they will come theory just does not cut it in today’s economic climate anymore. The Escambia commission has discussed moving away from the Pensacola Chamber to do the county’s economic development, but so far nothing.

We can’t help but wonder how hard the Pensacola Area of Commerce works to sell economic development in North Escambia. The county tried to lure an electric car plant to Century with millions in funding, but that failed. But what has the Pensacola Chamber done for North Escambia?

Besides the car plant, which was a county deal, the only major development discussed in North Escambia has been a possible Gulf Power nuclear power plant. But the Pensacola Chamber and the county commission had nothing to do with that. In fact, they did not even know it was planned until reported it.

It’s great that Mobile County will get 1,200 new jobs, and we are sure some North Escambia residents will drive to Saraland to work. But we are tired of the jobs going everywhere but Escambia County. It’s time for the Escambia County Commission to take immediate action toward county economic development. The current system in the is county is broken, and it needs fixing fast. Wouldn’t we like to see 1,200 new jobs in Escambia County by June?

We must, in light of the recent stories that we have reported about the push to consolidate Escambia County, Century and Pensacola into one super-Pensacola, mention that the change are advocating is not consolidation to improve economic development. It’s time for Escambia County to shut the door on the Pensacola Chamber and the city’s economic ways. The Pensacola Chamber and its backers will not work to put a  business in Century or Escambia County. Pensacola has a pension fund going broke and a multi-million dollar Maritime Park that needs funding.

It’s time for Escambia County to get into the economic development business and dump the Pensacola Chamber.


6 Responses to “Blog: 1,200 Area Jobs Announced Today — But Not In Escambia County”

  1. Homefry on May 1st, 2009 10:30 am

    We desprately need to regain our waters for drilling. America is loosing out on so much by not having the offshore drilling here From the guys traveling to the construction of the overseas plants to the cooks, janitorial workers and so on. Also the costs of flying abroad is terrible. Lets drill… People get real we must take care of American jobs it is the most important thing we can do to help.

  2. Chris Maloney on April 30th, 2009 3:45 pm

    As I said before, get some offshore oil/gas companies into our county and your life will change forever. They’ll need 1,000’s of welders, pipe fitters, truck drivers, roughnecks, roustabouts, production operators, floor sweepers, grocery delivery people, divers, and boat captains. Then best of all they’ll need somewhere on land for their business office to be. Prime location would be Cantonment or anywhere in North Escambia. They’d be out of the Pensacola’ians way except for a few trucks making it down to the dock. The airport would blow up even more b/c of business travelers & then offshore companies fly their employees out to the rigs & platforms. I can’t stress it enough for people to understand. Its the only reasonable & logical business for this county as a whole, north escambia & south escambia county.

    BTW: I’m posting this up from a gas platform 60 miles out in the Gulf of Mexico south of Houma, La.

  3. psu1earl on April 30th, 2009 8:16 am, I was with you 100% until you wrote Cindy Anderson’s name…she is not the person for the job in Santa Rosa County and deffinitwly not right for Escambia County! If the job was advertised (as it should be) I am sure her qualifications (not job titles) would put her at or near the bottom of the list.

  4. Walnut Hill Resident on April 29th, 2009 8:57 pm

    Everybody involved with our county system wants and has always wanted to let Pensacola have their way with everything. We are nothing but, a source of money on the north end with our taxes that go to the tourism trade of the stinking beach. We will never have any industry of any kind interested in any other part of Escambia County because everyone is worried about the snowbirds and all that beach crowd money. Put real industry into our future not minimum wage jobs for our kids and grandkids that relies on tourist trade. As for as the Martime Park who cares about it but the snotty nose rich of Pensacola or should I say P,cola. I can think of a lot of ways to describe P,cola but William wouldn’t print it because I am not politically correct most of the time as he has said a few times about me. To my face I must admit. LOL Bless his little pea-picking heart. We need good people from the north end of the county to run in the elections and the people from the north end to back them. People who are not afraid of the south end and what they want. Someone to stand up for the north end and have our voices heard for a change and make it count for something. Lord help us all someway. The county guys tried to get the port of P,cola running but I think it sank somewhere way out there. Old Buck tried his little heart out getting it done with trips at the countys expense to a few great vaction sites or should I say places of interest. We could have a lot of industry in this county if anyone cared anything about doing something except for the tourist dollar. That should be a four letter word not seven. You know most of the people I have meet on trips for work and vacations around this area and even the people in P,cola don’t know where I live when I say Walnut Hill. I have to say 40 miles north of P,cola. Then most of them tell me yeah P,cola that is where they have the big Memorial Day Beach stuff. Yes I have heard of that place just not where you are from on the north end. Bless all of you sweet people out there and have a good night.

  5. Chris Maloney on April 29th, 2009 2:23 pm

    Florida needs offshore drilling to get passed. Escambia County needs it horribly even though the corrupt government has driven everything good away!

    I’m tired of driving 260 miles to Houma, La. for a well paying job. The 1,000’s of onshore jobs that the offshore community creates is insane. No matter what happens the tourism of the beach will never be taken away. Everyone needs to say their claim in this. Energy Independence, Home Land Security, and Jobs for the Home Team.

  6. escambiamom on April 29th, 2009 1:50 pm

    The people on the forum don’t see to be too happy with Ms. Anderson’s job performance. They are alleging some Sunshine violations also that are supposedly being investigated. Is that true?
    Her resigning before she had the job from the county was bizarre also.
    And not giving up her position with the farmer’s cooperative while drawing a full salary from the county was disturbing also.

    Maybe the facts have been distorted but I would like to see these issue cleared up before I would support her hiring. And Bob McL has not been good for the county administration in my opinion. Anyone he was trying to push through quickly would raise red flags for me.
    Your mileage may vary.

    I hope you allow a differing opinion to be aired. I appreciate your news site.